11th April 2021
To tie in with Homeopathy Awareness Week we decided to focus this blog on the benefits of Ashwagandha.
Sometimes referred to as the Indian ginseng, this plant-based extract has long been used as a medicinal herb in Ayurveda where safe, natural and gentle products are favoured over modern medicine.
More recently in the West, Ashwagandha has gained popularity as a dietary supplement thanks to the likes of “fitspo” influencers and Meghan Markle all promoting its perceived benefits.
Here we look at just how effective Ashwagandha really is and whether it’s something you need in your life!
Reduces stress and anxiety
Ashwagandha is probably best known for its ability to calm and de-stress.
Classified as an adaptogen, it can help the body to resist stressors by stabilising physiological processes and promote a state of homeostasis.
In two studies lasting over 40 days, over 65% of participants who supplemented with Ashwagandha reported a decrease in chronic stress, anxiety and insomnia (Andrade, 2000; Chandrasekhar, K, 2012).
Increases fertility in men
There is evidence to suggest that Ashwagandha can help to boost male fertility and reproductive health.
Studies have shown that infertile men who took Ashwagandha experienced an increase in sperm count and motility, whilst one study demonstrated an improvement in cases of stress-related fertility where partners of 14% of the patients taking the supplement became pregnant (Mahdi, Shukla, Ahmad, et al, 2009).
Increases muscle mass and strength
Want something to supercharge your gym sessions? Then this root extract might just be what you’re looking for.
Research has shown that pulverized Ashwagandha root of 750-1250mg a day was effective in increasing muscle strength after 30 days whilst also significantly reducing body fat (Raut, Rege, Tadvi, et al, 2012).
Contains anticancer properties
A lot of superfoods claim to have anticancer properties these days, and we get it, it can become overwhelming to know what to take.
But the studies and research speak for themselves.
Rather than list them all here, we implore you to seek your own knowledge about withaferin, a compound in Ashwagandha, which helps to kill cancer cells by triggering the process of apoptosis.
Boosts brain function and memory
Anything which boosts brain activity is getting our vote!
Ashwagandha is known to significantly improve reaction time and task performance as well as memory and attention.
In today’s fast-paced world of social media and constant bombardment, those attributes may come in handy.
How can Peel help?
At Peel we offer Ashwagandha as a booster ingredient which can be added to menu items such as smoothies and porridge.
Our menu can be found by downloading our app
Andrade, C., Aswath, A., Chaturvedi, S. K. et al. (2000). A double-blind, placebo-controlled evaluation of the anxiolytic efficacy of an ethanolic extract of withania somnifera. Indian Journal of Psychiatry, 42(3). https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21407960/
Chandrasekhar, K., Kapoor, J. and Anishetty, S. (2012). A prospective, randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled study of safety and efficacy of a high-concentration full-spectrum extract of ashwagandha root in reducing stress and anxiety in adults. Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine, 34(3).
Mahdi, A., Shukla, K., Ahmad, M., et al. (2009). Withania somnifera improves semen quality in stress-related male fertility. Evidence Based Alternative and Complementary Medicine. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19789214/
Raut, A. A., Rege, N. N., Tadvi, F. M., et al. (2012). Exploratory study to evaluate tolerability, safety, and activity of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) in healthy volunteers. Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine, 3(3). https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23125505/